Carol A. Fierke

Carol FierkeA world leader in her field, Carol A. Fierke is the recipient of the 2018 Sigma Xi Monie A. Ferst Award.  She has previously been honored with the American Chemical Society’s Repligen Award in Chemistry of Biological Processes, the Protein Society’s Emil Thomas Kaiser Award and the Gordon Hammes ACS Biochemistry Lectureship for her contributions in the application of chemistry to the study of enzymes.  Her interdisciplinary research team of graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and fellow faculty focuses on the structure, function and biological relevance of metalloenzymes and RNA catalysts and the development of enzyme inhibitors as therapeutic agents.  Her research has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health, and has been funded by a number of other agencies and foundations, including the National Science Foundation, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, Office of Naval Research and Keck Foundation.

Fierke currently serves as provost and executive vice president of Texas A&M University, where she also holds the position of professor of chemistry and professor of biochemistry and biophysics.  In her role she provides oversight to the academic deans of 16 colleges and schools, two special purpose campuses, university libraries, and a comprehensive set of academic affairs services and units.

Prior to joining Texas A&M, Fierke served as dean of the Rackham Graduate School and vice provost for Academic Affairs–Graduate Studies at the University of Michigan, while holding the Jerome and Isabella Karle Distinguished University Professor of Chemistry in the College of Literature, Science, and Arts, as a professor of biochemistry in the Medical School and the University of Michigan. Fierke has been recognized for her teaching and curricular innovations to education at the University of Michigan.  She  has been additionally honored for improving the campus environment for faculty and students, especially women in science, including active involvement with the University of Michigan ADVANCE program for highlighting diversity and excellence. She has won numerous awards and honors, including the 2016 American Chemical Society’s National Award for Encouraging Women into Careers in the Chemical Sciences, sponsored by the Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation, Inc., the Imes and Moore Mentorship Award from the UM College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and the Rackham Distinguished Mentoring Award.

Fierke received a PhD in biochemistry from Brandeis University and a bachelor of arts in chemistry from Carleton College.  She completed post-doctoral training at Pennsylvania State University and served on the faculty at Duke University before joining University of Michigan in 1999, where she served as the department chair for chemistry (2005-2015) and vice provost and dean for graduate studies (2015-2017).